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Cannot afford the college ? What to do now ?

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Replies to: Cannot afford the college ? What to do now ?

  • whydoicarewhydoicare Registered Users Posts: 2
    edited May 2013
    If you want engineering, then it makes sense to start at a Penn State branch campus, if there is one within commuting distance. That should be affordable.

    Otherwise, you should be looking at community colleges or state-owned schools. The state-owned schools should be affordable, especially if within commuting distance, and they should also be accepting new students at this late date.

    Can't see the sense in a gap year. Is there any reason to think the financial aid would turn out differently next time around?
  • happymomof1happymomof1 Registered Users Posts: 100
    edited May 2013
    With a 3.3, if the OP can bring up that SAT score, or get an ACT over 30, there is guaranteed merit-based money out there that might bring the cost of his/her education down into the range of what this family can afford. http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/financial-aid-scholarships/1348012-automatic-full-tuition-full-ride-scholarships.html?highlight=bobwallace A gap year to think about the major, save a bit of money, and raise the exam scores may be in order.

    If the OP knows that there is no way to get the exam score up into merit-aid territory, then taking a year off may not be worth it. In that case CC or commuting distance state university makes more sense.
  • lammb66lammb66 Registered Users Posts: 6 College Search & Selection Champion
    edited May 2013
    Slippery Rock and other PASSHE schools will have a lower cost of attendance than Penn State. SRU does not have engineering though, does have the other majors your were considering. It is less expensive for my DD to attend SRU than an in-state school in Ohio.
  • our2girlsour2girls Registered Users Posts: 1
    edited May 2013
    Chiming in about Slippery Rock University as well. Looks like on collegeboard.com COA of in-state is about $22K:

    tuition and fees - $8,747
    room and board - $9,364
    books/supplies - $1,470
    estimated personal expenses - $952
    transportation expenses - $1,327
    total - $21,860

    https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/college-university-search/slippery-rock-university-of-pennsylvania

    (click on "paying" for above information)

    ...and if BobWallace says they are still accepting applications for the fall you ought to check it out! Good luck!
  • psufangpsufang Registered Users Posts: 12 College Search & Selection Champion
    edited May 2013
    Actually, PSU left me a 15k gap if I take the fafsa EFC into account.

    I think people are misunderstanding. My EFC according to fafsa is 1000 but actually, our family can pay around 8000. I am gonna apply to IIT and see what happens.

    Not really a fan of State owned schools and branch campuses. Would rather attend cc and commute. I can save tons of money that way.

    I think its pointless to turn down cc and take a gap year.

    So, I can't take the parent plus loans ? Its just 7k.
  • mom2collegekidsmom2collegekids Registered Users Posts: 216
    edited May 2013
    YOU can't take the Plus loans. Those are PARENT loans. Your parents would have to take those and be financially responsible for them.

    What is IIT?

    I think the idea of going to a CC first is a better idea. You and your family can set aside the amount that they would pay for the first two years for the second two years.
  • psufangpsufang Registered Users Posts: 12 College Search & Selection Champion
    edited May 2013
    yeah I meant parents but those loans have an extremely high interest rate of 7.9%. I would be in a debt of 50k. Is that reasonable ?

    IIT is Illinois Institute of Technology. Its private so I might get more aid compared to publics. Its free to apply.
  • mom2collegekidsmom2collegekids Registered Users Posts: 216
    edited May 2013
    Go ahead and apply. I doubt you'd get much aid from them.

    What are your parents saying about paying for those Plus loans? Would they happily pay those back?
  • whydoicarewhydoicare Registered Users Posts: 2
    edited May 2013
    In order to get aid from IIT to start this coming Fall, everybody else admitted to IIT and on their wait list would have to turn down that money. It's one thing to be admitted somewhere else at this late date, but quite another to get financial aid. IIT is a respectable school. If you are willing to go community college, I would think you're better off doing that while you formulate a new plan.

    This is just another opinion, but I would stay away from Parent Plus loans. You have alternatives.
  • psufangpsufang Registered Users Posts: 12 College Search & Selection Champion
    edited May 2013
    IIT does not have a waitlist. If the class is full, I might get rejected out-right.
  • CreeklandCreekland Registered Users Posts: 23
    edited May 2013
    Does your community college have the beginning Engineering classes? Ours does not. (Others might.)

    If you want engineering, it's common here to recommend PSU branch campuses over cc. Engineering is a sequential major. You need to start freshman year to easily finish on time and there isn't much wiggle room.
  • psufangpsufang Registered Users Posts: 12 College Search & Selection Champion
    edited May 2013
    It does not but the first year is just Calculus 1&2, Chemistry 1, Physics 1 and other gen eds right ? I might have to transfer after 1 year to some other college because PSU needs 2 years of credit.
  • CreeklandCreekland Registered Users Posts: 23
    edited May 2013
    Hubby did not go to PSU, but his Engineering Fundamentals class started fall of freshman year and there was at least one engineering class each semester. There was no wiggle room for him if he wanted to graduate on time.

    PSU may be different.
  • happymomof1happymomof1 Registered Users Posts: 100
    edited May 2013
    The transfer advisors at your local CC know about the Penn State system. Go talk with them about your situation. If you can successfully transfer into an engineering program after starting at that CC, they will know.
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